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Old 08-30-2007, 07:53 PM   #1
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I have been towing my 2000 crossroads for two years now off and on and I get mixed reviews. I tow with a 5.9 dodge diesel, stock motor except with KM filter setup. Rig weighs in at 10,600 empty. When I tow should I tow in overdrive or out of overdrive. One friend says he never tows out of overdrive and another say always tow out of overdrive to keep the RPMs up. What do you say?
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Old 08-30-2007, 07:53 PM   #2
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I have been towing my 2000 crossroads for two years now off and on and I get mixed reviews. I tow with a 5.9 dodge diesel, stock motor except with KM filter setup. Rig weighs in at 10,600 empty. When I tow should I tow in overdrive or out of overdrive. One friend says he never tows out of overdrive and another say always tow out of overdrive to keep the RPMs up. What do you say?
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Old 08-30-2007, 08:29 PM   #3
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I'm not a big auto tranny guy (or expert) but for me if you start seeing the torque converter unlock, or if it starts hunting around then I'd lock it out of OD.

Cummins also considers running 5.9 with a load below 1600 RPM to be lugging, and to be avoided...
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Old 08-31-2007, 04:43 AM   #4
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I always tow with the OD on. I have 4:10 gears and I don't have a problem keeping the RPMs up on the highway. I am turning right at 2000 RPM at 65, so that is where I keep it on the road. When I get in town or in the hills and mountains I will have to take it out of OD to keep from lugging and keep the EGTs down.

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Old 08-31-2007, 05:23 AM   #5
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The consensus that I have read in many forums is this:

As long as the tranny is not searching (continually shifting up and down) then leave it in OD. In my previous truck, I would take it out of OD when I started driving on tertiary roads. On the Hiways and Biways, I left it in OD unless it started searching.
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Old 08-31-2007, 06:06 AM   #6
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by K-Star:
The consensus that I have read in many forums is this:

As long as the tranny is not searching (continually shifting up and down) then leave it in OD. In my previous truck, I would take it out of OD when I started driving on tertiary roads. On the Hiways and Biways, I left it in OD unless it started searching. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Agreed. I tow a 12,500# fifth wheel with a Ford F-350 diesel and always tow in overdrive. Went to Colorado this summer and the TV would just downshift on the hills and there wasn't even any hunting.
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Old 08-31-2007, 06:17 AM   #7
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My truck has the 6 speed Alison automatic which the top two gears are overdrives. I turn on the tow/haul switch and let the tranny's software do it's thing. It won't stay in the top 6th gear unless I'm going over 58 or 59 mph because the computer senses that the rpm's would be below the peak torque.

When ascending or descending the steep grades here in Western NC, I use the 'M' position on the shifter which opens up a selection of gears 1 2 3 4 5 6. I'll select the appropriate gear to pull or ascend the grade and just leave it there until the grade is passed. Then I go back to the 'D' position and set the cruise control on the flat, low traffic highways.

My trailer weighs 16,300# loaded, so far I've had no issues using the overdrives.
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Old 09-01-2007, 06:15 AM   #8
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My 5er weighs 10,600 too. I tow in OD all the time. I watch my EGT and RPM and try to shift out of OD before the transmission does it for me. I have my transmission control, DTT Smart Box, on when towing as it keeps the tranny locked up in 3rd until the truck exceeds 55 mph where it shifts to OD.
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Old 09-01-2007, 07:00 AM   #9
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I just recently traded my 5.9 for the 6.7 but i always left it in OD & used the tow / houl mode. My 5r weighs in at just under 12500 and have never had a problem. The 48RE trans is a very reliable transmission nad tends to take care of itself as for downshifting when needed.
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Old 09-19-2007, 04:41 AM   #10
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O/D on unless the trans is hunting between gears. The cummins makes its HP at low rpm turning the O/D off may take you out of the HP range you want.
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Old 10-18-2007, 05:59 AM   #11
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I've got one of them Hard Boxes with a handle on it for shifting with 182,000 miiles on it. Still have original clutch in it.

Up until this year Dodge did not have an automatic that was good for towing. Thats why I use a manual tranny. All my other trucks were auto's. At least this year you can get a six speed auto. I still don't trust the one from Dodge, but the other one in the commercial trucks comes with a 180,000 mile/3 year warranty, no questions asked. (4500/5500)

So in my opinion, if your going to use an older automatic for towing you should do one of three things if you have either a 3:55 or 3:73 rear ratio;

Get an underdrive unit that will make at least a 4:30 gear ratio and save you tall gears for running light or;

Change your gear ratio to at least 4:10. Doing that is not a bad thing, you just have to slow down a few mph with the cummins to get the same mpg you now getting. You'll find you'll get much better fuel mileage towing than you do now with your 3:73 or 3:55 ratio. Most 3500's with
Six speed manuals with 4:10's get 12.5 towing
16,000lb fifth wheels. Some do better depending on how fast you tow or;

Tow in 3rd gear if you want your tranny to last.

Cummins will tell you, you should be tuning 2200-2300 rpms if your towing at hyw speeds.

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